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Continuity and change of self-reported problem behaviors from adolescence into young adulthood.

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Sophia Children's Hospital/Erasmus University Rotterdam, Department of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, The Netherlands.



To investigate the 4-year course of behavioral and emotional problems from adolescence into young adulthood in a general population sample.


The population consisted of 364 individuals, aged 15 to 18 years at the beginning of the study. Subjects filled out the Youth Self-Report at the first time of assessment. At follow-up, 2 and 4 years later, subjects aged 19 or older completed the Young Adult Self-Report, which was derived from the Youth Self-Report.


Almost 40% of the adolescents who were classified as deviant initially were still deviant 4 years later. There was no significant difference in the continuity of internalizing problems versus externalizing problems in this sample.


All types of problems tended to persist to a similar degree. This holds also for problems that are often regarded as typical childhood problems, such as attention problems and hyperactivity. Because adolescent problems are likely to continue, we need more knowledge on the efficacy of interventions.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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